Raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds) add a nutty flavor to the delicious sauce for these chicken enchiladas that are topped with gooey melted Swiss cheese. Try serving it topped with chopped romaine lettuce that's been tossed with your favorite vinaigrette—the same way that this popular dish is served at La Fonda on Main, the oldest Mexican restaurant in San Antonio, Texas.
Note: For a milder flavor, serranos should be deseeded.
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup white onion, diced
- 2-3 cups serrano chiles, destemmed and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1/2 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
- 1 pound tomatillos, husks removed, quartered
- 1 cup crema Mexicana, crème fraîche or sour cream
- 1½ tablespoons kosher salt, or to taste
- 2 chicken breasts (approximately 1 pound), poached and shredded and warmed
- Vegetable oil, as needed for softening tortillas
- 12 corn tortillas
- 2 cups Swiss cheese, shredded or shredded asadero or Chihuahua cheese
For the Sauce:
1. Place the oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion, serrano chiles, garlic and pepitas. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, 3 to 5 minutes.
2. Add the tomatillos and cook for an additional 10 minutes or until soft. Add the crema Mexicana and salt to taste. Bring to a simmer and remove from the heat. Allow to cool for a few minutes.
3. Place the ingredients in a blender and purée the mixture in batches until it has a smooth consistency. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
Assemble the Enchiladas:
1. Pour oil to a depth of half an inch in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Heat to low frying temperature, about 300°F.
2. Place each tortilla in the oil and fry for a few seconds, just long enough to soften. Drain on paper towels.
3. Place 2 tablespoons of the shredded chicken on a softened tortilla, roll, and place in an ovenproof baking dish large enough to accommodate the enchiladas in a single layer. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
4. Top with the tomatillo sauce and cheese. Place under a broiler until the cheese melts and the top browns in spots, about 5 minutes.
5. Cover loosely with foil and let rest for a few minutes. Serve with a chopped romaine lettuce salad dressed with your favorite vinaigrette. Even better, sprinkle the salad lengthwise down the center of the casserole.
Reprinted with permission from Enchiladas: Aztec to Tex-Mex by Cappy Lawton and Chris Waters Dunn, Trinity University Press